Kelowna Condo Update We have been focusing on single family residential a little too much lately so I thought I would shift gears and shine my tiny flashlight on what’s been going on in the Kelowna condominium market.
Quick disclaimer. I eliminated units for sale at Big White ski resort. When looking at Kelowna area condo stats during the Winter things look better than they really are when sales from the hill are included. During other months it drags the numbers down too much so I unchecked that box. If you want Big White info send me a quick note and I’ll let you know what’s going on up there. Also, Leasehold condos eliminated also. No real reason..just because.
Inventory of Kelowna Condos available for sale
There are 449 condo apartments for sale in the Kelowna area and there have been 726 apartment sales so far in 2014. There is a 5 ½ month supply of units on the market so this segment of our housing is mercifully in a balanced market again. That took a long time. The number that doesn’t seem to alarm anyone but me is the number of vacant units on the market. 114 vacant apartments for sale which represents about 1 in 4. This is likely because of strata corporations not allowing rentals which makes units tougher to sell and often puts a seller in a tough spot if he needs to rent for a some reason. Provincial legislation ending rental restrictions in strata apartments would go a long way in finding a solution to affordable housing in this city/province but don’t see that happening anytime soon. Or ever.
Kelowna Monthly Sales 2011 to 2014
Last year there were 532 apartment sales at this time of the year so the number of unit sales is up considerably year over year. Sale prices are up slightly from last year $246,000 to $252,000 so nothing to celebrate here really regardless if you’re a buyer or seller. Let’s call it a cost of living increase with no winners or losers. The number to jump up and down about is the increase in unit sales from 532 to 726 year over year. We all knew this would happen eventually we just never thought it would take this long. On a cautionary note, we will likely slip back in to a buyers market for apartments over the Winter when sales activity always slows down but Spring promises to be crazy. The old adage of condos being the first to see a drop in prices during bad times and last to rise during good times seems to be ringing true here so it’s likely a smart time to consider investing in a condo again.
Kelowna Townhouse Months of Inventory 2012 -2014
The townhouse market doing even better than the apartment market. The average sale price of a townhouse last year at this time was a respectable $319,000 (267 sales). So far this year it’s $343,000 based on 344 sales which works out to a 7.5% increase in prices over last year. That’s a 28% increase in the number of townhomes sold and we’re in a balanced market.The townhouse market is balanced also.The good news for this part of our housing market is that we’ve surpassed 2007 levels which many consider the housing boom. Average prices for townhouses were $323,000 back then so if you bought back then and hung on, you’ve finally caught back up.
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The Globe and Mail published a story today (Friday) chronicling neighbourhoods where home prices have gained the most in Canada’s major cities. Kelowna house values didn’t make this list because we’re not part of one of the four largest Canadian cities but it made me wonder where we would rank and if we would even make the list. Spoiler alert¦..we wouldn’t.
Average price gains from July 2009 to July 2014 were randomly selected. Just because. Perhaps median price gains would better reflect true growth in communities like ours where lakefront homes are significantly higher than a typical middle class family home but let’s not get picky and just go with it.
As a former Montrealer, let’s start there. Montreal showed the weakest growth of the four with an 18% increase overall in five years with communities like Westmount, Verdun and St. Laurant recording increases of 69%. Overall, Toronto house prices increase 43% in all areas since 2009 with Willowdale, Agincourt and Newtonbrook leading the way with prices 75% higher. When did Agincourt become sought after? Globe and Mail Neighbourhoods where home prices gained the most
Same story for Calgary and Vancouver with increases of 22% and 29% overall with areas like South Calgary and Hillcrest for Calgary and Dunbar and Queen Elizabeth Park area for Vancouver leading the way.
Our super cool little community with a 90 mile lake running through it with directions given by pointing out where to turn with landmarks like golf courses and wineries saw the average price increase by 16% over the same period. My first thought is how can we be trailing Montreal? Vancouver real estate prices have always defied logic so we can generally shrug off those numbers because they really don’t make sense to anyone. August’s average price was $984,000 (not a typo) in Vancouver which means before you hit your next birthday this number will likely be 7 digits.
The lesson to take from this is if you’re a Kelowna buyer waiting on the sidelines wondering when the time will be just right¦.. rightnowis the right time. Long term, short term, medium term prices look like they aren’t going down and could have risen a lot more especially compared to other places in the country.
Make your move before the Kelowna Housing Prices go up. Call me for my top 5 picks in each area.